Wednesday, 26 September 2012

GS Discussion - Week 4: Freedom of Expression vs Respect for the Other - and How to Solve this Dilemma

Questions for Discussion from Aik Wisanu Krutngoen for Week 4 

Dear all fellow FDU Global Scholars,

    Good morning! I hope everyone has a wonderful rest over the weekend. It is my utmost pleasure to be part of the Global Scholars discussion group, and I truly enjoyed the open discussion we had in the previous meetings. As I am honoured to pick the topic for discussion in this upcoming Friday, I would like to ask everyone to please prepare for the discussion topic of the immediate current global affairs-the reaction(s) over the American short film relative to Islamic beliefs and the consequences on a global level.  

   While it is easy for us to discuss over how this current wildspread reaction has taken the world as it is, I would rather ask all of us to prepare for analysis of the situation as if you are one of the UN special envoy taskforce specialists from your COUNTRY to combat this very specific global issue. This taskforce is aim to (1) actively battle current waves of anger/misunderstanding/retaliation, (2) create the mutual understanding of the current global movements of fundamentalism and the development in place. Please kindly be suggested that you are in this special taskforce to ensure the right direction is to establish, and the suggested solutions are to follow on a global stage as well as in your country.

   Please also be mindful that this analysis involves the intangible issue of religions as well as the human rights for freedom of expressions, therefore, as future global leaders, you will have to balance your own personal beliefs-first witin yourself, then with your fellow countrymen, and further with the other nations with measurable and meaningful solutions.  I would suggest everyone to mention/discuss this topic to your classmates (any class) over the week for initial probing of their reactions, prior to a focus on your decision on what to do next-this way you will know how people react with different feelings/thoughts and you will be able to come up with affirmative solutions, based on your understanding of others (and other’s understanding of you).     

  There will neither be a ‘Right” nor “Wrong” solution at the end of this global affairs discussion. So, thank you very much, and please make sure you enjoy being the “expert” to analyse and explore this very real current global affair, and I look forward to enjoy the discussion in this coming Friday!


Wisanu (Aik) Krutngoen, PhD.
Associate Director, Admissions-Vancouver

Fairleigh Dickinson University-Vancouver
842 Cambie Street
Vancouver, BC, V6B2P6

Sunday, 16 September 2012

International Peace Day

Dear All,

Friday, September 21st, 2012, is International Peace Day.

Here some info about that special day and it's background:

And for those of you who are new to FDU Vancouver: we had two special FDU Peace Days in 2010 and 2011. For details, please see:

Our 3rd FDU Peace Festival and Fair will take place on Friday, 23 November 2012, from 2:00 pm to 8:00 pm. I hope you will all do your share in making that particular day a huge success! Please post your projects and ideas for this event here:
We will have a first planning session on Friday, November 2nd, from 2:00 to 3:00 (FDU, Room 135). Please come!

Of course, I'd also like to invite all of you to start creating more peace in this world individually even before November 23rd - and to continue creating peace after - ideally every single day!

Thank you!


GS - Discussion - Weeks 2 & 3: Election in the US - 2012

Week 2:

This week's topic for discussion - chosen by Tendayi:  US Election Campaign 2012

Let's hope that the stir created by the disrespectful movie made by a person who, unfortunately, misused the freedom of speech he had will calm down soon and lead to new harmony, peace, and mutual trust and understanding everywhere in the world.

Here a link to the speech Barack Obama gave at the Democratic National convention on Sept 7th, 2012:

... and here a short article about the election campaign by Doublas La Bier (published today, Sat, Sept 15th, 2012):

You may also want to remember Barack Obama's famous speech "Yes, We Can," which he gave in January 2008 - i.e. before he became President:

A funny speech given by the President in Virginia: Obama is diagnosing an important new disease: Romnesia:

And last but not least: check out the website of the president:

Week 3:

We will continue our discussion of last week's topic this week as well: US Election Campaign 2012!

For info about the election system in the US please click on the following links:

Thousand thanks to Rodrigo for finding - and showing us - these two clips about the Electoral College!


Saturday, 15 September 2012

Topic 1: Life in a Global World - Life in a Local World

We are living without any doubt in a global world today - and yet, it is also a world characterized by a multitude of indigenous local cultures. I find this coexistence of the local and the global extremely exciting as well as stimulating since it allows us to experience a cultural variety that has never been possible before.

Please share your thoughts and experiences on the global and the local with the rest of us. Here a few links that may serve as a starting point:


Indigenous Cultures of the World:

Welcome & GS Discussion - Week 1

Dear Citizens of the World,

Welcome to this Blog about Global Awareness and Connections! This site is meant as a discussion board and should therefore reflect YOUR interests and not just mine.

Discussion - Week 1:

What we focus on in this Discussion Group, depends on all of you!

Please let the rest of us know what you are interested by explaining it  here in this first section!  Feel free to add interesting links you would like us to read, listen to, watch and/or talk about during the next weeks and months!

Thank you - and please enjoy our discussions!